Singapore focuses on basic needs to guard against populism: PM Lee

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (left) in a dialogue with Mr Steve Forbes, chairman and editor-in-chief of Forbes Media, at the Forbes Global CEO Conference yesterday, Oct 16, 2019.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (left) in a dialogue with Mr Steve Forbes, chairman and editor-in-chief of Forbes Media, at the Forbes Global CEO Conference yesterday, Oct 16, 2019.ST PHOTO: JASON QUAH

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong yesterday outlined Singapore's approach in keeping populism at bay: By having a government that focuses on the people's basic needs, providing equitable policies and opportunities for citizens to upgrade themselves.

Populism has become an issue in many developed countries because of a divide between the elite and the masses, he said at a Forbes Global CEO Conference yesterday.

During a dialogue with top executives, he also discussed the political unrest in Hong Kong, the impact of US-China trade tensions on the region, how Singapore balances immigration and growth, as well as Singapore's role in South-east Asia.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 17, 2019, with the headline 'S'pore focuses on basic needs to guard against populism: PM'. Print Edition | Subscribe